Dananananaykroyd are everywhere. Picking up critical acclaim for their hilariously good debut LP, touring the nation to ballistic acclaim and generally mucking about on the internet, they’re the “seriously fun” maxim personified. Much has been made of their relentless ability to appear boisterous in concert and on record, but it wouldn’t work unless they were attentive listeners and interepreters of musical gesture. Sonic Youth meet Fugazi while Don Caballero tell them to turn it down so we can hear the widdly bits, if you like. And Billy Corgan’s there too, but no-one’s really speaking to him.
Just before their sold-out show at the Hoxton Square Bar and Grill, we had a chat with guitarist David Roy and vocalist/drummer John Baillie Jnr. regarding their acclaim, their energy, their unity and some other guff.
What’s your favourite bit in Robocop?
David Roy: “Can you fly, Bobby?”! You know, the guy from _That 70s Show_? I can’t look at that guy now without thinking “Can you fly, Bobby?”! He probably looks in the mirror every day and thinks, “I swear I’m a nice guy.”
Yeah, I remember him, Clarence something-or-other…
DR: Yeah, Clarence Boddiker. I sometimes imagine the guy from _That 70s Show_ is actually the guy from _Robocop_ later on in his life when he’s settled down with a family.
I bought some tablets in Superdrug yesterday. The dosage said take five at a time, but it’s only a packet of twenty-four. What’s that about?
John Baillie Jr: What were they for?
A stomach complaint.
DR: They do that on purpose. You don’t need to take five. But when you get to the last four, you’re gonna need to buy the next pack.
JBJ: In paracetemol, it’s mostly shite. It’s like filler so you can hold it, because it would be microscopic. Well, not microscopic. Fucking tiny. Inconveniently small. So you think, instead of taking five, why can’t they just double the strength?
DR: What, so you take two and a half? Is it not the way the NHS need to make money?
Do you like how I’ve got a page of serious questions and a page of silly ones?
DR: What are you talking about? “What’s your favourite bit in _Robocop_?” That’s a serious question! You know, I haven’t seen that film since I was about 8… my uncle showed it to me when I was a wee boy, it scared the living crap out of me.
That’s the first film I ever saw that had an 18 certificate.
DR: Me too! That bit where he gets shot to pieces is horrible… “Can you fly, Bobby?”
When I saw it, though, it was taped off ITV and they’d censored certain bits of it, so when this one henchman drops a load of scrap metal on Robocop, instead of shouting “Die you bastard!” he shouts “Die you blackguard!”
DR: Haha, “Die you blackguard!” “Forget you!”
JBJ: When we were in America I realised that the only version of _The Karate Kid_ that I’d seen was taped off the TV. So there’s these little bits that I’d never seen before, like, you know when he’s in the shower and Johnny’s rolling a joint, and he gets the hose and fucks him up? There’s a shot where the camera’s down, and Johnny’s rolling a joint, and they don’t show you that on TV. I never understood how he got wet, ever. He just seems to turn a tap on and run away.
DR: Not the back-firing-toilet-wet-his-joint trick? Sorry, your interview.
That’s fine, it’s all part of it. I was reading the NME review of your album, and it tries to place you in the context of some sort of scene, it didn’t really talk about the music at all. What did you think?
DR: (sounding resigned) It’s funny you should ask. We were talking about this earlier today. Personally, James McMahon who wrote it is a really good guy. He asked to do the album, so we were dead chuffed, we thought were going to get a proper, good review in the NME and we wouldn’t have to worry about it anymore. I’m really gutted. Really gutted. It goes back to my teenage years when the NME actually meant a lot to me, and I would buy every 9/10 or 10/10 album. I always dreamed that one day… you know, because the NME’s going downhill a little, I don’t read it so much anymore… I’d always dreamt of having a great debut album score, a well-written review. It kind of broke my heart a little, because I’d waited fifteen years and it’s a bit of a let-down. He didn’t mean it. He didn’t. He was asking why we were gutted, ‘cos we told him.
JBJ: He said he really loved the album.
DR: But the review wasn’t about our album.
JBJ: No. It felt like at the end of it he was like “this album will add to this scene that I’ve just explained to you”.
DR: I know it’s kind of sad, a band like us waiting for a big NME review. It’s because of my age, and I am a little older, so I read the NME when it was at its peak. And that’s that done. That’s our debut album in the NME done, and we can’t ever get that back. I just wished it could’ve been better. This is on strictly personal level, it doesn’t reflect the opinions of the band! Most of them don’t care, we don’t really read our own reviews. But personally it was a little bit of a downer.
Aww, oh no! More tomorrow, when our subjects talk about what they’d do if one of them died. But it’s funny. Have a little listen then!